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Low (<15) watt valve guitar amps    Follow updates at Twitter@jedi_star or Facebook

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updated 5/9/2013

Reasons for small valve amps -

Reason one - Health

Lower volumes can prevent hearing loss - there are a many rock stars with the affliction of tinnitus or are going deaf due to long term exposure to loud music including:  Phil Collins and Roger Daltry (the Who), Jeff Beck, Pete Townsend, Eric Johnson, James Hetfield, Mick Fleetwood and a lot more.

Reason two - Your live sound should match your practice tone

I hate the thought that my rig will sound different live when you crank it up louder.  Check out the Edge's gear - he runs racks with effects and little combos inside. You just mike it up and run it through the PA.

Reason three - You can actually lift them!  My Tiny Terror lives inside its little bag in my cable trolley. Fewer trips for my lug.

Reason four - Fewer valves means less maintenance costs.  If your amp has KT88s on board you can be up for over $50 per unit.

"Which small or low watt guitar amp?" is a common question on many forums.  My valve amp journey started with a Crate Vintage 50 2 by 12 combo.  It was great amp - but it weighed a ton and I could never use its tone without bleeding ears.  My next amp was a bit smaller, VHT Pittbull 45 single 12. Again a great amp and weighed a lot less than the Crate - but still way loud. I currently use an Orange Tiny Terror (mainly) and a THD Univalve - which I love.  Sure 2 channels would be great ..and I would kinda like more clean headroom ...but I cannot afford a Mesa Boogie Lone Star Special. 

Since I started this collection a while back I am sure there are a lot more small valve amps around ... here are more than 190 examples for your enjoyment. These machines are perfectly suited for bedroom or recording studio application. I gig with my Tiny Terror - no problems.  For larger venues add a microphone.

For those wondering about low power amps - it is all about power valve saturation (not preamp valve).  When you hear it you will know and you will want more of it....

Of course for those wanting to keep their high power amps - you can achieve power valve saturation at more modest sound pressure levels using an Attenuator or isolation cabinet.

Cabinet ohms | Pedal Power Supplies | Pedal BoardsTravel amps | Headphone amps | Travel guitars | Valve preamp pedals | Fender car color guitars

Ace Pepper Buzz Bomb

15 watts
A gainy little amp made to rock small clubs.
3 x 12AX7 and 2 x EL84 tubes
SS rectifier
cathode biased
8 ohm output
front panel (L to R)
input, hot/cool switch, gain, low, mid, high, master, earth, sky, standby and power

Ace Peper also makes a 10 Watt Short Block

ADA Rocket

10 watt valve amp

Advance Tube Tech Magic Eye

Dimensions: mm570 x 220 x 210
Weight: Kg 15,3
Pre/Driver section tubes: 3 x 6SL7/6188
Power section tubes: 2 x 1619 MILITARY N.O.S. RCA
Audio power: 10W class “A”
FX loop serial/parallel
Controls: gain, master, bass, middle, treble, send, return
Switches: Bright, Fat, Send FX-Loop +4/-20, Ground lift, FX serial/parallel, FX on/off
Output/input jack 1/4”: Guitar input LO/HI, Line out, FX send/ return, speaker 8 ohm/16 ohm, FX ser/parallel, FX on/off
Remote control through dedicated pedal: FAT, GAIN, MASTER
Remote control through generic on/off switch: FX LOOP ON/OFF, FX LOOP SER./PARALL.

Alessandro Beagle

Cabinet Solid, hand rubbed oak with laminated oak front panel.
Output 10 watts @ 8 or 16 ohms
Preamp Tubes 2 x 6SL7 (all-octal)
Power Tubes 2 x EL84

Alessandro Working Dog Beagle 10 watt valve amp

Alien Five

5W RMS All Tube

Single-Ended / Class A

2 parallel outputs / 4 and 8 ohms

2 x 12ax7 and 1 x EL84 (JJ Tubes)

Allen Amplification Classic 10

Output Power - 10 watts.

Tube Compliment - (1) 12AX7 preamp tube and (1) 6L6GC or EL34 power tube.

Class A single-ended with cathode bias.

Equalization - TONE control to cut or boost highs, BOOST switch "ON" thins out bass.

Chassis - brushed 18 gauge stainless-steel.

Transformers - USA made TP18 power transformer and Heyboer TO11C output transformer.

Topology - Loosely based on tweed Princeton 5F2-A™ but with more power, unique boost feature and a solid-state rectifier.

Cabinet - Finger-jointed pine with Birch plywood floating speaker baffle and MDF back panels.

Speaker(s) - Eminence Copperhead 8 ohm speaker.

Special Features - Cathode biased power tube can be a 6L6GC or an EL34. Unique BOOST switch pumps up the gain for more mids and highs and eliminates the negative feedback for a more Marshal like overdrive tone.

Size and Weight - 17"W by 17"H by 9"D and 24lbs.

Allen Amplification Classic 10 combo valve amplifier

Ampeg  GVT 5H

Dual power modes
Full power – 5 watts RMS
Half power – 2.5 watts RMS
Preamp: Tube ( 1 x 12AX7 )
Rectifier: Solid state
Power amp: Tube ( 1 x 6V6GT )
Tone controls: Baxandall treble and bass
Speaker outputs: 1 x 16 ohm, 2 x 8 ohm and 2 x 4 ohm
Cabinet: Void-free 15mm plywood
Dimensions (H x W x D inches excluding handle approx.): 9.1 x 15.5 x 9.1
Handling weight (approx.): 20 lbs / 9.1 kg

Amp Exchange MEAN 13

Single channel with volume, treble, middle and bass controls

Extremely overbuild with many N.O.S parts for tone & reliability

Extremely low noise across entire Db range

4, 8, 916 OHM outputs

Has only one 12 AX-7 dual triode for lower noise while producing similar gain to '59 Fender Bassman

Has a 5 watt to 13 watt selector switch-5watt mode runs the tubes in triode mode while 13 watt run's the tubes in pentode mode

Use's all high quality (made in U.S.A) Mercury Magnetics transformers

Ampmaker

AK01 - The SE-5a guitar amp kit

Do it yourself  5W single-ended Class A amp, with Treble, Middle and Bass controls

Amp maker kit valve amp

Arte Sound Italy

5 watt and 15 watt amps and combos.

The specs for the 5AS pictured right:
Power Output 5W
Tube Compliment - (1) 12AX7 (1) 6V6 power tube (1) 5Y3
Class A single-ended with cathode bias.
Solid wood cabinet available in cherry or walnut
Speaker Jensen available in 8" or 10"
 

Arte Sound 5 watt valve combo

Artec Sound Tube 5

TUBE-5C (combo)
- OUT PUT POWER : 5W (RMS)
- VALVES: 12BH7 x 1 , 12AX7 x 1
- SPEAKER : 10”x 1 (16 ohm)
- DIMENSIONS : w454 X d248X h389(mm)
- WEIGHT : 14 (kg)

TUBE-5H (head)
- OUT PUT POWER : 5W (RMS)
- VALVES: 12BH7 x 1 , 12AX7 x 1
- DIMENSIONS : w454 X d228 X h185(mm)
- WEIGHT : 7.8 (kg

Aston Electronics

5 Watt valve amp kit

Aston Electronics 5 watt guitar amp kit

At Mars Amplification Filmosound Specialist. This amp is driven by a pair of 6V6 power tubes with the power supply rectified by the 5Y3 rectifier tube. The front end normally uses a 12AT7 and 12AX7 for the preamp and driver/phase inverter. However, both of these tubes can be substituted with any tube from the 12AU7 family to provide a variety of gain structures based on your preferences. The Specialist is a cathode biased amp and puts out about 15 watts. The combination of the cathode bias and it's uncommon phase inverter makes the amp very touch sensitive. Although normally the amp starts to dirty up at about “3” on the dial, adjusting your pick attack or rolling back your volume knob can take the amp from dirty to clean without the use of a stomp box.

Auble Systems System 110

System 110, - in its original form consisted of (1) 12AX7,(1) 12AU7,(2)6V6 tubes with a triode-pentode switch making 6 and 12 watts. Since then the front-end is used with many different power sections resulting in amps making anywhere from .9 to 30 watts. The simplicity of the design gives the amp a very versatile and dynamic characteristic. At the low end of the volume control the tone is very reminiscent of the 59 Bassman, and when cranked morphs into a very Marshall-like tone.

Auble systems amp

Audio Kitchen Little Chopper

7 Watt

Based around an ECC81 and ECC83 in the preamp and EL84 power amp, the tones range from ultimate 'American' cleans, through classic British chime and grunt, all the way out the other side to Crazy-Horse style scuzz.

Controls on the front panel are Gain, Bass, Middle, Top, Stack, Power

Nominal Power Output
7Watts Single Ended into 8Ohms
Valve Compliment
1 x ECC81
1 x ECC83
1 x EL84
1 x EZ81
Dimensions Approx Excluding Handle and Feet
320mm x 210mm x 205mm (W x D x H
 

Audio Kitchen Little Chopper 7 Watt low watt valve amp

Audio Kitchen Big Trees

The Big Trees
2.5W into 8 Ohms
ECC83, EL84, ECC82 valve compliment.
Little Chopper output transformer.
Also includes a dummy load and post EL84 Line Output feed so it can be used as a 'pedal' or can go straight into an audio interface.
'Bypass' in line output mode is actually a valve line driver with a stack of clean gain.

The Big Trees manual

 

[Source: Steve Crow, Audio Kitchen, email 23/10/2012]

 

The Big Trees pedal amp

Bad Cat

MINI II : 5 WATT
1 Channel, 1 Input : 12" Speaker
The only thing small about this powerhouse 5 watt amp is its size. You won’t believe your ears when you hear this baby cat roar. Ideal for low-volume studio recording, the Mini II is a Class A, point-to-point wired, tube powered brute.

Experience the sweet tone of a dual overdriven 12AX7 pre-amp section and a single EL-84 power tube in your bedroom without disturbing your neighbors. Also features Line Out, Volume, Interactive Bass, Treble and Master Controls. 4, 8, 16 Ohm Selector.

 

Review

Bad Cat Mini II guitar amp

Barchetta XT 15

Two modes, clean and drive with a tone knob and master volume for controlling overdriving. Clean tones up to nice Class A overdrive with touch sensitive playabilitly. Completely hand wired with high end components. Made in U.S.A.

Barchetta amp

Baron Snott Watt

Single channel dual gain mode 12BH7 Push/Pull 5 to 7 watt amplifier.

100% Tube signal path No Diodes or SS components

3-12AX7A preamp tubes and 1 12BH7 push/Pull power tube.

Vintage Gain Mode: Clean to crunch.

Modern Gain Mode: Crunch to Metal

Dual gain Controls, Treble boost, gain modes, dry/wet settings.

Dummy load for use as a preamp and or line out.

Barr Amplification

Barr amps come in  range of power output options from 5 watt. The Monster can be switched 5, 10, 20 and 30 watts with pentode and triode channels.

Bearpaw Growler

Bearpaw's Growler range from 1 watt up...

Big White Monkey The Chimp.

Single ended Class A 5 watt amp, switchable to 2 watts

BWM Big White Monkey The Chimp amp

Black Heart Killer Ant

<1 Watt RMS, Single-Ended, Class A
Solid State Rectifier
Volume (the rest of the tone is in your hands)

 

 

The Black Heart Little Giant is  5 watt version.

Black Heart Killer Ant amplifier

Blackstar HT5

Innovative 5 Watt valve amplifier
• 1xECC83 and 1x12BH7 valves
• Unique push pull power amp design
• Award winning HT Pedal preamp
• Two footswitchable channels
• 10˝ Celestion speaker
 

Blackstar HT5 2 channel low power valve amp head

Blankenship Amps Fatboy

Speaker: 1x12"

Power: selectable to 10, 15, 18 or 25 watts

Tube Complement: Two 12Ax7, Two 6V6 and 6L6 sets, One 5AR4 or 5Y3 rectifier

Controls: Volume, Volume, Tone, On/Off, Standby

Cabinet Coverings: Aged Lacquered Tweed (standard), Rough Blonde Tolex, Red or Purple Levant

 

Blankenship Amps Fatboy 10 to 25 watts selectable

Blues Land

BabyBlues starting at $650 - a 3 to 8 watt 9 (depending on the power tube used) single ended amp that is similar to a tweed champ on steroids with a couple of other features and tweaks.

BluesKing starting at $800 - a 13 watt amp that is similar to a tweed deluxe with a couple of other features and tweaks.
Options; can come with a 50/60's (cathode to fixed bias) switch that switches the amp from that 50's squeezed class A (cathode bias) sound to a tighter, more Marshally sound like a 60's (fixed bias)

Speakers; none, head only - 1x12 tweed or plexi-glas, 1x12, 2x12, 2x10.

The pix are of two recently finished (Oct 2009) amps that are available with or without handles.

The one on the right is currently loaded with a rare early 60's British Elac alnico 10 inch speaker..
The one on the left is loaded with an early re-issue of a Jensen P10R alnico 10 inch speaker.

BluesLand 1999 Catalog and pricelist

Bluesland Babyblues valve amp

Bogner Panama

4 watts push pull with 2 6V6 tubes

Bogner Mojado Head

15 Watts 6V6’s Volume Knob 4-Position Schizo Knob

Bogner Panama

Bogner Mojado Amp

Bugera V5

Boutique-Style 5-Watt Class-A Valve Amplifier Combo with Reverb and Power Attenuator.

Bugera V5 small valve amp

Bullhead Amplification Lead Sled

This is a no-frills clean through high-gain guitar amp. With a single-ended Class A power section, you can slam the power section to get that hot power tube saturation you've always been after. Don't be fooled by the wattage rating; this is a tiger in kitten's fur.
◦Single Channel
◦10Watts, Class A, Single-Ended
◦Clean through High-Gain
◦Hand-wired
◦Hand-tested components
◦Combination point-to-point and turret construction
◦Teflon wire
◦Cathode-biased Power section (From the shop, we use a 6V6)
◦Preamp tubes: two - 12AX7
◦Poweramp tubes: one - 6V6
◦Controls: Master Vol, Presence, Bass, Mid, Treble, Gain
◦FX Loop: None
◦Outputs: 4, 8, or 16 Ohm
◦Power/Standby Switches

Bumbox Lead One

Controls
Gain - Treble - Middle - Bass - Master Volume
Preamp - 2 - 12ax7's
Power section - 1 - 6n1p
Output power
1w max, 1/2w clean
Dimensions
15.5" x 7" x 7", 10lbs.

 

The Bum Box Reino Unido is switchable 12/20 watt.

Bumbox Lead One guitar amplifier

Byers Model 10

Classis tweed tone with greater range. Warm and clean with plenty of headroom and switchable overdrive for classic tube distortion.
Completely hand wired and assembled from only the finest components.
No printed circuit boards.
Treble - Bass - Volume - Tone control circuit out switch and Overdrive controls.
Hi - Low dual inputs.
10" Weber speaker.
5 watts RMS clean output with 10 watts max signal output.
Properly wired heaters and shielded inputs create virtually hum free operation.
6v6GT - 12AX7 tubes.
4 ohm output impendence from Mercury Magnetic output transformers.

Byers Model 10 5 watt amp

Carp Amps 1030

Power Output: 8 Watts

Output Tubes: 1-6V6 S

Preamp Tubes: 1 – ECC83S

Rectifier: Solid State

Controls: Gain, Tone, Volume

Configurations: Head, Colors: Black, Red

Dimensions and Weight

Head: 16" W, 9 1/2" H, 9 1/2" D, 20

Carr Mercury

Class A Single-ended fixed bias EL-34 output stage Single channel: bass, treble, reverb 3-position boost switch Treble cut switch Built in 4 position attenuator (8, 2, 1/2, 1/10 watt)

 

 

Review

Carr Mercury amp

Carr amps Raleigh 3 watt

1-10 compact combo with Eminence Lil' buddy hemp cone 10" speaker
2 12AX7s, 1 EL-84 tube compliment
Volume, Tone, Clean/Overdrive Toggle Switch, Master Volume controls
3 watts output
Ideal for home and studio
Glassy 60s blackface tones to juicy, sustained overdrive

Carramps Raleigh 3 watt valve combo amp

Carvin Vintage 16

All tube design - three 12AX7 preamp(Groove Tubes V1) tubes, two EL84 output Groove Tubes™ power tubes
- 1 Meg Passive tone controls for broad adjustment range.
- Front controls: VOLUME, SOAK, BASS, MID, TREBLE and REVERB
- Metal shaft controls, Ivory knobs, Red jewel lamp
- Strong Poplar plywood enclosure covered in thick TWEED
- GT12 speaker
- Output: 16 watts / 5 Watts, Pentode / Triode into 8ohms
- Single 8ohms speaker jack.
- CH EQ: 60, 650, & 11.5K Hz.
- Size: 16 inches wide x 8.5 inches deep x 17.75 inches high
- Weight: 31 lbs.
- 120V or 240V models
- Made in San Diego, California

Carvin Vintage 16 amp

Carvin V3M

Channels: 3
- Power: 50W/22W/7W selectable
- Impedance: 4/8/16 ohms selectable
- Tubes: 4 EL84, 4 12AX7
- Lush reverb
- Speaker Outputs: 2
- Line Out (cabinet voiced)
- Effects Loop
- Master Boost Control
- Optional Footswitch: FS44L or FS22
- Blue or Red Backlit LEDs (selectable)
- 120 or 240 VAC 50-60 Hz (switch)
- Dimensions: 15" (38cm) wide X 8.5" (21cm) deep X 7" (18cm) high
- Weight: 19 lbs (8.6 kgs)
- Made in San Diego, California

Carvin V3 M amplifier

Cheese Blocks Mini Menace

1/2 Watt Tube Guitar Amp Head

The amp is built into a pedal sized enclosure and powerd by an external 12V wall wart (included). It has an 8ohm output.

This is a great sounding little amp based on a 12AU7 using a JRC386D for the power amp stage
 

Cheese Blocks amplifier

Chute Amplifiers CC-02

15 watt, three 12ax7 two 6v6

 

Clark Amplification Lil' Bit ltd™
Five watt / Ten Watt, Single ended Pure Class "A" circuitry, one twelve combo, chrome chassis.

This amp features the chassis of a 5E3 with two separate input channels, (Bright and Normal) with a common tone control. Channels can be bridged for even more tonal options. The amp features the ability to operate with either a single or two 6V6's. You may also mix a 6V6 and a 6L6 for added tonal palette. Output wattage is easily selected by the use of one or two output tubes.

* Tube compliment is one 5Y3GT, one or two 6V6 Tung Sol (RI), two 12AX7 Mullard. All NOS tubes available.

* Jensen paper, copper foil, and oil coupling capacitors, Allen Bradley carbon composition resistors, Sprague electrolytics, CTS potentiometers, Carling switches, Switchcraft jacks, NOS tube sockets Mil Spec, Original solid 22g cloth covered wire.

* Weber VST 12A125 12" speaker or Celestion G12H30 speaker.

Clark L'il Bit amp

Cornell Romany

Output:
A - 10 watts
B - 2 watts
C - Ό watt
Valve Complement:
ECC83 (x1)
6L6GT (x1)
 

Cornell Romany amplifier

Cornford Harlequin

6 Watts. Class A. 2 x 12AX7 Valves (preamp), 1x EL84 (output stage), 12 inch Celestion Vintage 30 Speaker, 2 x inputs (hi and lo), Volume, which simultaneously controls first and second gain stages (tandem pot), Treble, Master Volume and voice switch which alters the frequency range over which the tone controls operate

Cornford Harlequin 6 watts Class A valve combo

Craig Amps Lil' Big

 Its a 2watt push-pull amp. Handwired

Craig Amps South Africa Lil Big

Crate V5

V5 Class A combo features a single EL84 output tube producing 5 watts through a single 10" speaker

1 EL84 Tube

 

 

The Crate V16 Palomino is a USA made combo.

15W power
Class A tube circuit
Single channel with Boost switch
12" Celestion speaker
Gain, 3-band EQ, Level, Reverb knobs
Spring reverb
18-1/2"W x 16-1/2"H x 9-1/2"D
38 lbs.

Crate V5 guitar amplifier Class A EL84

Cuba St The Radiotone

The Cuba Street Amplifier Company, New Zealand

The Radiotone is a pocket battleship!
5 watts of class A pure valve tone through a grunty little Weber 8" speaker. Or run it as a head into your favourite
speaker cabinet . . . growls like a mad thing!
P2P hand-wired, fingerjointed cabinet, two-tone tolex covering.

Made in Aotearoa, New Zealand

Cuba st The Radiotone

Culler Amplification 1 Watt amp

Auto Air Automotive Finishes
Volume + Boost Controls
1/4" Input and Output Jacks
On/Off Switch with LED indicator
Works with 4/8/16 ohm cabinets
1 Watt of output cranked
All quality components used

Power supply and battery adapter included
Hand-built / Hand-wired in USA

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